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Dead Reckoning A Work Of Fiction By Lawless


Dead Reckoning

A Work Of Fiction By Lawless

Tall dry grass rubbed his face as the breeze sent it swaying. The huge clouds overhead with their dark blue bellies were promising rain before this day was done. His mind was a swirling mass of memories and thoughts. Worry, excitement, resolve and everything in between caused his pulse to race. Controlling his breathing was helping to keep him focused on the task ahead. The lack of sun was a blessing he thought. Even though the mornings had been cool for a few weeks, the daytime temps still climbed into the high eighties. He watched as a trio of doves flew overhead, and he remembered the lessons his dad had given him on shooting fast moving birds. They had gone on many hunts together, though it all seemed like a dream now.

Life can change in a heartbeat and the last 11 months had been a roller coaster ride. Less than a year ago, Jack McCain had been a supervisor for a manufacturing plant in a small town in central North Carolina. He owned a home, had a girlfriend and made almost 6 figures before taxes. Life was good and it seemed it would only get better. Sunday lunch at his folks’ and Friday night bowling were about as exciting as life got for Jack and small town living suited him just fine. He had known everyone in the town he grew up in. His dad was well known and was very active in the local government. Back when Jack was a teen his dad had been the mayor for 4 years but once that term was up, he did not run for re-election. “One term should be enough for any man to offer his contribution to making this country better Jack” his dad had said. Many men from the area had asked him to run again, but there was no budging Samuel McCain once he had made a decision.

Jack had always loved the outdoors and being in the field with his dad was something he cherished. Camping, fishing and hunting were all a large part of growing up in the McCain household. Growing up shooting had been normal back in those days, people didn't lose their minds at the sight of a pistol or long gun. In high school it was a pretty normal sight to see a rifle or shotgun in the back window of a truck in the student parking lot. Jack remembered letting his math teacher, Mr. Duncan, hold his new Ruger Gold Label when he had bought it with money earned bagging groceries at the Red and White. Mr. Duncan had told him what a fine shotgun it was and offered to take Jack over to his farm to get a few ducks. Those days seemed so long ago and in today's America there was no room for the Mr. Duncans of the world.

Movement across the open field caught his attention. The glint of metal in the passing sunshine and the sound of a band were reaching his senses and caused him to snap to attention. The queasiness came flooding back, but he knew this choice was already made. There was nothing to do now but to see this through. He watched the flags moving lazily in the slight breeze and the movements of the men seated on the stage. Sweat began to form on his forehead despite the chill that seemed to have gripped him. In minutes there will be no going back. He looked at his notepad and verified the numbers one last time and then put it in his back pocket. This would be an easy shot compared to some of those he had made during his training over the last few months. He tuned out the buzz of insects and the dust from the grass and focused on his breathing and the view in the scope. A drop of sweat trickled from his cheek and onto his lips. It was salty and reminded him of how dry his mouth had become over the last few minutes. This was no training exercise, this was for real.

He could see that the crowd had filled the courtyard and spilled out onto the street. The intel he had been given showed that his target was the next to take the stage, he began to make himself ready. He got into a sitting position above the grass and extended the legs of the Harris until he could see the paint marks he had placed on them. This Remington 700 had been his constant companion over the past two months and it seemed like an extension of his body. He settled in behind the rifle and again started to control his breathing and focus his mind.

He was glad for the weeks of training he had been given, shooting from positions just like this had been a priority. Hits at over 1000 yards were almost easy now if he did his part. The big 300 was a master at bucking the wind and with it behind him today the effect on bullet flight would be minimal. “Steady Jack” he whispered to himself. He now could see the target walking toward the podium from the rear of the stage. His hand was in the air and he had a huge smile on his face. The knots in Jack’s stomach tightened as he flipped the safety to off. The target stood beside the glass podium waving to the crowd and then pointed his finger and nodded to someone in the throng, likely some big donor to his campaign.

The trigger broke almost imperceptibly. The heavy rifle bucked and he instantly was moving the bolt for a second shot. When he reacquired the podium in the big Nightforce, he saw that no second shot was needed. He hoped the news crews got good film of it all, but there was no time for wondering about anything else, this was go time. He picked up his empty casing and shoved it into his pocket, then stood up in a crouch and shuffled over the rise and into the woods. Once he was in the trees he ran hard and the rifle felt as light as a broomstick with the adrenaline coursing in his body. He reached the truck quickly, and stripped his suit and tossed it and the rifle in the tool box between the cab and the spreader. He jumped into the front seat and the big diesel came to life with a twist of the key. He silently wondered if the fertilizer spreader would seem inconspicuous enough, but no time for second thoughts now. He pulled the John Deere cap onto his head and started down the road.

United States House of Representatives Domestic Affairs Committee chair Will Jones, the author of the Small Arms Registration and Licensing Act, was dead. The first reprisal in this war, and it was war, had been dealt today by a group of Patriots who knew that these enemies of Liberty would not stop, but had to be stopped. Voting and petitioning were of no use now. The people who thought that they ruled with impunity would see today that choices had consequences. Jack turned onto the four lane and accelerated toward the coast. He reached down to turn on the radio and noticed his hand still trembled a little. “Last Dance With Mary Jane” came through the speakers as the son of Pastor Samuel McCain, drove east to meet his ride out of Virginia.


  • Two

    Her heart was pounding and her lungs were burning but that just made her push even harder. Her pumping legs and arms pulling her forward at a pace that even most soldiers would find difficult. The Bates desert boots she was wearing gave her feet excellent grip on the loose, rocky soil as she pushed herself up the trail. Running in full gear with rifle and assault pack was the only way she did it these days, no sense training in sweats unless that was what you intended to fight in. The buds in her ears screamed “Dirty deeds” by AC/DC and she gave it everything she had left for the last hundred yards.

    “Get a shower babe” he said as she pulled off her pack and vest. Dave Wilkes and his wife Kay lived in the eastern Tennessee mountains right on the North Carolina border. They lived a simple life in a small cabin where the outside world seemed very distant. “What, you don’t like sweaty women in camo?” Kay said with a wink as she walked toward the bath house.

    Deciding to leave the rat race of corporate America, they had bought 80 acres on the side of a mountain and spent the last 9 years with little contact with their former lives. They both had seen the writing on the wall long before most people figured out that all was not well in the USA. It took most of their savings and more than a few lost relationships to start this new life, but they both agreed that it was the best thing that they had ever done. The last few years had shown them that the freedom most people think they have is just an illusion, and as more and more liberty was taken away they began to make some preparations for the trouble they knew was coming.

    Sure, they bought “beans, bullets and band-aids” and plenty of them, but they were most proud of the training they had sought out. The Wilkes had attended many classes on a multitude of topics from shooting and tactical training to food storage and medical seminars. They had made friends all over the country and some of them had become very close. They did PT in some form every day, and both were in top physical condition. “Train like you fight” was more than just words, the Wilkes lived it. While neither had served in the military, they had many friends who were either currently in or had served. Their guest cabin had seen some hard chargers come and go over the years as it was offered as a getaway for those who called them friends. Many late night conversations by a fire had forged tight bonds with some very smart and talented men and women right here on this mountain.

    While Kay was in the bath house cleaning up, Dave started boiling some potatoes and carrots to go with the pork that had been cooking in the Dutch oven since that morning. The sound of his pre-paid phone startled him a little; he picked it up and flipped it open. As he held it to his ear he heard,“Everything good, I’ll see you tonight”. “OK” was the only reply he offered, and flipped it shut. “He made it” he whispered to himself as he stirred with the wooden spoon.

    The miles clicked by, the hum of the tires and rush of the wind were the only sounds heard in the dark car. Jack McCain was numb. The emotional roller coaster of the past few days had taken a toll on him. He watched the yellow lines in the headlights knowing this was the last leg of his exfil. He had accomplished his objective; the first of the traitors had been killed and he had gotten away clean. He knew that there would be a massive investigation and the media would be raving for days about the noble William H. Jones and his assassination by radicals who “clung to the ideas of the past”. Jones had written the law which made individual firearm ownership all but impossible except for a few elites. He was the darling of the Left, a genuine hero of the establishment on both sides of the aisle. The only difference between Republicans and Democrats were their mascots. Now the first traitor was dead, and Jack was the man who had killed him.

    The car slowed and the driver pulled into a dirt path and stopped. Jack shook the nameless man’s hand as the car idled in the darkness. “Thanks for the ride” he said with the tired smile of a man with too little sleep. “No thanks needed brother” was the reply as Jack shut the door. A wave and a smile and then the car backed onto the road and disappeared around the next curve. Jack shouldered the Blackhawk bag and began the walk toward some much needed rest. It had taken many people to pull this off. From trainers to his ride here, there had been a concerted effort with many dedicated people.

    As he walked along the trail, he looked at the huge sky with countless stars and remembered what it was like before his life had been turned upside down. He had spent many nights under the stars with his dad and here in the cool air, under this magnificent sky he missed the old man so much it hurt. Samuel McCain had refused to turn in his firearms when the law had passed. He was outspoken and had led a local coalition in opposition to the Act. He had been killed in a midnight raid when he came down his own stairs after hearing breaking glass and footsteps. It wasn't a raid as much as an execution, a message to those who still refused to comply. Many more had died or had been arrested in the weeks that followed. The government had cracked down hard after the law passed and offered rewards for any information on privately held guns.

    Through a chance meeting, Jack had been introduced to some people who had been through similar experiences. He met the Wilkes through a friend of a friend and had spent some time on this mountain. Jack had vowed to avenge his father, and with the help of a very organized and very large network of people from all over the country, he had gotten the training and help to do it.

    He could see the outline of the horses in the dark, the smell of them was reaching his senses when he heard a female voice say “about time you decide to show up, you are as slow as an old lady”. “An old lady would know” he said with a grin and walked up to the figure on the big mare. Handshakes and hugs were given and received and then three figures rode up the mountain toward the cabin and some much needed rest. Under the brilliant stars Jack heard Kay humming and the melody caused a stir of emotion. He mouthed the words and then looked up at the sky. “For you dad”.

  • Outstanding! Any thoughts about turning this into a novel?
  • Great stories
  • Awesome.
  • Glad that you enjoyed them !
    I’ll keep my eye out for more at other sites and if the writer gives me permission to re-post them then I will.

    Also if any of you guys want to take a stab at writing one of your own please feel free to do so !
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